GARY | The Gun Buyback hosted this past Saturday by the Gary Police Department is being called an “overwhelming success.” According to Police Chief Wade Ingram, a total of 129 guns were turned in in exchange for Wal-Mart gift cards. Local churches partnered with the GPD to serve as the turn-in locations.
“The gun buyback program exceeded our expectations,” said Ingram. “I’d been told that previous turn-ins yielded less than 50 weapons, so we were happy to see that we went far beyond that number.”
The response was so positive until the amount of gift cards did not cover all of the guns that residents were attempting to turn in. Contact information was collected for those individuals, and they will be able to turn their guns in and receive their gift cards at a later date.
It has not been determined when another gun buyback will take place; however, officials certainly have an interest in hosting another one in the future.
“We thank the churches for getting involved with this anti-violence measure,” added Ingram. “We will continue to work to get the message out that violence is not the answer and that we want our streets back.”
Listed below is the breakdown of the weapons that were turned in and the locations: 9 assault weapons; 31 rifles;; 19 shotguns ; 53 revolvers; 16 semi-autos; 1 High Powered BB Gun for a total of 129 guns.
The following organizations participated: Gary Christian Center, 3673 Broadway, 25; Grace Unity C.O.G.I.C., 3435 West 21st Ave., 31, Trinity Baptist Church, 1831 Virginia St., 14; Victory Overcomers, 4400 Delaware St., 16; Marquette Park United 215 North Grand Blvd., 16; Beyond 4 Walls Church, 875 South Lake St., 7; Moving in the Spirit 4031 West 11th Ave., 3; Pilgrim MB Church, 1301 W. 21st Ave., 17.